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International Committee of The Red Cross

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) is a humanitarian organization that provides assistance and protection to victims of armed conflict and other situations of violence, headquartered at Geneva, Switzerland.
International Committee of The Red Cross
Leadership team

Peter Maurer, Switzerland (President)

Gilles Carbonnier, Switzerland (Vice President)

Dominik Stillhart, Switzerland (Director of Operations)

Caroline Douilliez, France (Director of Human Resources)

Charlotte Lindsey-Curtet, Switzerland (Director of Communication and Information Management)

Cyrill Gutschmidt, Switzerland (Director of Financial Resources and Logistics)

Helen Durham, Australia (Director of International Law and Policy)

Emanuele Capobianco, Italy (Director of the Health Division)

Headquarters
Geneva, Switzerland
Region served
The ICRC has a presence in over 90 countries, with operations and programs that reach millions of people in need each year in Africa, Asia, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America.
Year stablished
1863
Address
19 Avenue de la Paix, 1202 Geneva, Switzerland
Social Media
Summary

The International Committee of the Red Cross is a humanitarian organization which is based in Geneva, Switzerland, and it is also a three-time Nobel Prize Laureate. State parties (signatories) to the Geneva Convention of 1949 and its Additional Protocols of 1977 (Protocol I, Protocol II) and 2005 have given the ICRC a mandate to protect victims of international and internal armed conflicts. Such victims include war wounded persons, prisoners, refugees, civilians, and other non-combatants.

The ICRC is part of the International Red Cross and Red Crescent Movement, along with the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC) and 192 National Societies. It is the oldest and most honoured organization within the movement and one of the most widely recognized organizations in the world, having won three Nobel Peace Prizes (in 1917, 1944, and 1963).


History

The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) was founded in 1863 in Geneva, Switzerland, by Henry Dunant, a Swiss businessman and social activist. Dunant was inspired to create the ICRC after witnessing the suffering of wounded soldiers during the Battle of Solferino in Italy in 1859. He believed that a neutral organization could provide assistance to wounded soldiers on the battlefield, regardless of which side they were fighting on.

Dunant's vision was realized with the creation of the ICRC, which initially focused on providing medical care to wounded soldiers during times of war. The organization's role expanded over time, as it began to provide assistance and protection to civilian populations affected by armed conflict.

During World War I, the ICRC played a major role in providing humanitarian assistance to soldiers and civilians affected by the conflict. The organization established prison visitation programs, worked to reunite families separated by the war, and provided medical care to wounded soldiers.

In the years that followed, the ICRC continued to expand its role in providing humanitarian aid and protection to people affected by conflict and violence. The organization established a number of key principles, including the principles of impartiality, neutrality, and independence, which continue to guide its work today.

Today, the ICRC operates in over 90 countries, providing a wide range of services, including emergency medical care, family reunification, support for detainees, and assistance to refugees and internally displaced people. The organization also works to promote international humanitarian law and advocate for its respect and implementation by governments and other actors.


Goals and Purpose

To protect the lives and dignity of people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence: The ICRC works to prevent and alleviate human suffering by providing assistance and protection to those affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence. This includes providing medical care, supporting detainees, and assisting refugees and internally displaced people.

To promote and strengthen international humanitarian law: The ICRC works to promote and strengthen international humanitarian law, which is the body of law that governs the conduct of armed conflict and seeks to protect those who are not or are no longer participating in hostilities.

To provide impartial and neutral humanitarian assistance: The ICRC provides impartial and neutral humanitarian assistance to people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence, regardless of their nationality, ethnicity, religion, or political beliefs. The organization seeks to alleviate suffering and promote respect for human dignity.

To work with governments and other actors to promote respect for international humanitarian law: The ICRC works with governments, armed forces, and other actors to promote respect for international humanitarian law and to ensure that it is implemented in practice.

To promote dialogue and cooperation among parties to conflict: The ICRC promotes dialogue and cooperation among parties to conflict, with the aim of preventing and resolving conflicts and ensuring that the needs of those affected by conflict are addressed.


Impact

Providing humanitarian assistance to millions of people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence: The ICRC has provided medical care, food, shelter, and other essential assistance to millions of people affected by armed conflict and other situations of violence. The organization has also helped to reunite families separated by conflict and to facilitate the release of detainees.

Promoting and strengthening international humanitarian law: The ICRC has played a key role in promoting and strengthening international humanitarian law, including the Geneva Conventions and their Additional Protocols. The organization has worked to ensure that these laws are respected and implemented by governments and other actors.

Advocating for the rights of detainees: The ICRC has played a leading role in advocating for the rights of detainees, including the right to humane treatment and the right to due process. The organization has conducted visits to detention facilities around the world to monitor conditions and provide support to detainees.

Fostering dialogue and cooperation among parties to conflict: The ICRC has worked to foster dialogue and cooperation among parties to conflict, with the aim of preventing and resolving conflicts and ensuring that the needs of those affected by conflict are addressed.

Influencing the development of humanitarian policy and practice: The ICRC has influenced the development of humanitarian policy and practice, including through its leadership in the development of international humanitarian law and its efforts to promote best practices in humanitarian action.


References
International Committee of The Red Cross
Leadership team

Peter Maurer, Switzerland (President)

Gilles Carbonnier, Switzerland (Vice President)

Dominik Stillhart, Switzerland (Director of Operations)

Caroline Douilliez, France (Director of Human Resources)

Charlotte Lindsey-Curtet, Switzerland (Director of Communication and Information Management)

Cyrill Gutschmidt, Switzerland (Director of Financial Resources and Logistics)

Helen Durham, Australia (Director of International Law and Policy)

Emanuele Capobianco, Italy (Director of the Health Division)

Headquarters
Geneva, Switzerland
Region served
The ICRC has a presence in over 90 countries, with operations and programs that reach millions of people in need each year in Africa, Asia, Europe and Central Asia, and Latin America.
Year stablished
1863
Address
19 Avenue de la Paix, 1202 Geneva, Switzerland
Social Media